Emergency Information

Food Security in Benalla: access to healthy food

Food security occurs when people have access to safe, nutritious food that is both culturally and socially acceptable. Food must be available on a daily basis, affordable, easily accessed and able to be used. Food insecurity occurs when a person is unable to do this.

In 2013 Benalla Health and the Benalla Rural City Council conducted a Food Security Scan to collect information about healthy food access in Benalla.

The report found that:

  • Benalla has the 11th highest number of people experiencing food insecurity in the state, with 8.4% of the population running out of food in the past 12 months and could not afford to buy more.
  • There is a high number of low income earners in Benalla
  • Only 1 in every 9 food stores sell fresh fruit and vegetables
  • Many people have poor transport to food
  • Pockets of Benalla West, South West, North West and rural areas are in "food deserts." A food desert is an area where food is not availble within a 500m walking distance.

Healthy food is expensive in Benalla. To buy healthy food for a fortnight it costs;

  • $402 for a family of four
  • $275 for a single parent family
  • $96 for an elderly woman
  • $127 for a single man

Imrpoving healthy food access can make it easier for residents and families living in Benalla to eat healthy, nutritious foods.

Benalla Rural City Council: Food initiatives could improve health for local children